Doctor Scott Miller and a member of Breaking the Chains with puppies.

TV vet Doctor Scott raises money for Ukraine animal ambulance

Vet and TV personality Doctor Scott Miller is raising money for a veterinary ambulance in Ukraine following his visit to the warzone last month.

The father of four who has veterinary practices in Richmond and Isleworth visited Ukraine in January with the animal charity Breaking the Chains.

Many of the estimated 8 million refugees who fled Ukraine after the invasion were forced to leave animals behind.

Speaking as a dog owner, Miller said: “Anyone who has an animal as part of their family will know they are exactly that: family.

“To leave pets behind must have been absolutely heartbreaking.”

Groups of dogs now run freely along the front lines, which means puppies are born into infection and disease.

Miller said it is better to help from within Ukraine rather than trying to get all of the animals out, as they are quickly replaced by overbreeding.

On his visit, Miller went to an underground bunker that had become home to three families and many animals.

He said: “It was a miserable existence, but the one moment where I saw them smile was when they were holding their dogs.”

Miller also performed an amputation on a dog called Johnny during a power cut, while it was -6 degrees outside.

Dr Scott Miller with Johnny
BACK ON HIS PAWS: Johnny been rehabilitated since his surgery. He is coming to the UK this week to find his forever home. Credit: Dr Scott Miller.

Trying to operate on the frontline was a challenge as his vehicle and makeshift surgery would shake due to shelling.

A veterinary ambulance that can reach the frontline and cope with the severity of the terrain is vital, Miller explained.

“The humanitarian and animal situation is entwined. Lots of people who remain on the frontline are there because they didn’t want to leave their animals.”

Miller had not previously been to a warzone but he did go to Pakistan in 2005 after an earthquake to work with horses and donkeys.

He also helped in the aftermath of the 2020 Australian bush fires to treat injured wildlife.

Miller is also considering visiting the Turkey-Syria border in light of the recent earthquake.

Many animals have been trapped, injured or killed in these areas, but some have been reunited with owners.

Miller said: “The impact on these people who have lost everything, to know they haven’t lost their pet is lovely to see. 

“That’s what makes this type of work so important.”

He is hoping to go back to Ukraine with the veterinary ambulance later this spring.

If you would like to donate to the fundraiser, visit the Gofundme page.

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Hermione Limon
Hermione Limon
26 February 2023 11:34 am

Great work Scott and team! Glad to see our fab local vet making such a difference. Take care.

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